22 SES 01 A, Higher Education Graduates and the World of Work, (Part 1)
Symposium to be continued in Session 22 SES 02 A
HG, HS 33
Elinor Edvardsson Stiwne
The academic labour market has been undergoing discernable transformation in recent times, largely reflected in the shifting relationship between higher education, state and economy. Universities are increasingly seen as drivers for economic growth and have been charged with the task of not only producing highly skilled graduate labour, but also leading-edge knowledge, research and innovation (DFES, 2003, DIUS, 2008). Within this context there has been growing policy emphasis on the employability, skills and career development of early career academics, both in terms of developing generic skills to be utilised in the academic profession as well as skills which might be applied in the external market (DFES, 2003; 2006). The aim of this paper is to examine some key issues in early career academics' employability, career progression and trajectories, and to consider the different conceptual tools that can be applied for researching this. Moreover, it will consider early career academics' professional development, work-based learning and identity formation, and the cultural, institutional and disciplinary contexts within which these are located. This paper therefore aims to address several main research questions, namely: how do early career academics understand and manage their employability and career progression?; what are the different career progression routes for early career academics and how are these structured?; what factors go into shaping early career academics' work identities, work-based learning and professional development?
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